I don’t like the word wrong.
To me, it represents naughty, forbidden, or oppression, judgement and the leanings of authority.
In truth, wrong can mean anything someone disagrees with. If they are not always right, then the word wrong, or man’s interpretation and wild use of it, has a lot to answer for.
Some things in life are definitely wrong. We all know that, like it has to be wrong to harm another person outside of self defence, to steal from someone or to behave intolerantly to other’s differences. Dishonesty and corruption are wrong, equal to discrimination, prejudice and hatred.
Thanks to the guidance (and discipline) of my parents and experiences and temptations that came my way, I learnt right from wrong very quickly. While my conscience is forever pricking my senses, I’m not a fanatic goody goody. It just means that I have, in my opinion, a balanced view of what is wrong and what is right, for me and the future of humanity.
Looking at the bigger picture of the world we all live in, I see many wrongs that are considered by many to be right. When clearly they are not right, it has to be wrong that politics and religion ignore the impact on people’s freedoms and choices and in some cases, their very lives, liberties all citizens of the world have a right to live by.
If I found life to be complicated, mesmerising and oppressive, then who knows the suffering of those who were not born with the privileges of democracy and equality? The latter is something we still strive and fight for, even in my own country. Here we have many wrongs that will never equal right.
I could place the blame on governments past and present, the umpteen authorities and the strange and dogged belief in religion, but I realise enlightenment and reasoning is a slow process for the human kind, especially when it comes to mythical notions of right and wrong.
Laws dictate how we should behave, while those who have no social graces or understanding of the rights of others ignore them at will.
That could be me, skirting around rights and wrongs. It isn’t, but then if I were asked to interpret the word wrong, I’d suggest it’s anything that grates against the harmony of living side by side in relative peace.
I think that’s a too broad interpretation. It can’t be wrong to have a different opinion to another, or to feel uncomfortable with someone else’s instincts or beliefs, or even the way they choose to live. If we have choices, we either accept our differences once debated and argued, we tolerate what’s alien to us, or we walk away with grace.
Wrong is when we judge others just because they are not like us. How guilty am I in forming an often unspoken opinion of someone because of the way they look, dress, behave or smell?
So sure, wrong sneaks into my personal world too often, where my frigging conscience delights in prodding guilt out of my sensitive soul.
The thought police will soon be with us. It will become a crime to think against mainstream thought, or against authority or God, or indeed to air views in public. Even today, one has to be wary of writing stuff online, in case some sensitive soul is offended, or a subject is just too taboo. Digital road signs tell us what to think or remind us of basic road sense. Sure some idiots need reminding, but they are the sort who ignore road signs anyway.
I wonder who decides to upload such nonsense. Is it a blob at a laptop, thinking up what we are to think, or is it some little Hitler enforcing the future into our day to day lives? It irritates me immensely, as much as I accept that if ‘Think bike’ saves a biker’s life, it’s part of a modern day need.
I ask myself, am I a hypocrite for also cocking a snoot at the law and all the rules and regulations enforced upon us by the people we trust to protect our civil rights.
The difference is that when I disregard many authoritarian goalposts, I do so because I think they are wrong, or at least misguided or just a racket to control us. I’m subtle, discreet, I harm no one in the process or endanger any life and unless I intended to, try not to get caught!.
And that’s another issue. Governments like to control us to the ninth degree. We have gotten so used to it we barely notice, but it’s scary because our freedoms and choices are being eroded by the day, even here in the UK.
I won’t bore the reader with examples, for there are many that a few years ago we’d have never thought of making up, let alone believing that one day they will become the reality of so called freedom and liberty.
Okay, if I must; isn’t feeding the ducks in the park one of the simple pleasures in life? And isn’t putting the wrong type of rubbish in the wrong bin just a simple human failing? Then why is it possible for local authorities to enforce fines and a potential criminal record on those who like to feed the ducks, or by mistake put an empty milk carton in with the landfill rubbish?
I yearn for a government that says enough is enough. I wait for local authorities to have a watchdog that forbids them abusing the powers they seem to assume, where they use a piece of legislation there to protect us from all sorts of real dangers, and re-interpret it as a way to fleece the innocent of all their misdemeanours and human failings.
That’s a wrong that grates with what I call freedom and liberty. We all know from experience that give someone a bit of power, a uniform, a badge or high vis jacket, then the chances are Hitler and his ilk will resurrect in some way to belittle the citizen who is just trying to live life as they allow others to live theirs.
We can make a stand against the nonsense rules and the self-appointed dictators that control our choices for the sake of it. Challenging authority might be subject to an interpreted law that forbids it, yet going against the grain is itself enlightening and compelling, as long as it is not behaviour that ignores common sense and the goalposts that define a civilised and fair society.
I say that, wondering if we will ever enjoy such goalposts that equate to equality for everyone who lives according to them?
Strangely, I see the selfish and the greedy ignore goalposts all the time. They seem to get away with it, especially when driving, shopping or even interacting with others. They are the ones the rest of us either give way to, avoiding a potential accident, an unpleasant incident, or unjustly bear the brunt of their rudeness and social ineptitude.
Sometimes I can’t stand by and watch. Occasionally they get the edge of my tongue, a reminder of how to behave to be seen as less of a bollock brain.
But again, who am I to dictate how others behave, when I know darn well I’d go ape shit if someone told me my behaviour was not in keeping with mainstream society. Mainstream society is often the problem, so why the hell would I want to be in keeping with it?
My behaviour is generally placid, pretending to be subservient to the dictations of life. Occasionally I can be forceful with my views, challenging ignorance and oppression. Simmering beneath my ageing skin are traits and urges ready to define the actual meaning of a free and democratic society and the wonders of human differences.
As we continue to define the meaning of wrong, maybe within it there’s a thread of right for many, without straying from the essential elements of humanity and the adult, consenting and mutual aspects of human needs!